Recovering from a night at the BAFTA TV Awards, Robert Hutchins blames party sponsors Bananagrams and the power of PR for his lingering headache.


This week’s leader column comes to you from a delicate place where sore heads and bleary eyes run amuck.

At the time of writing, it’s currently the morning after the night before, and this particular night before was one heady whirl of glitz, glamour and roughly a gallon of Champagne.

Believe it or not, the ToyNews team spent the evening and a fair few of the wee early hours too, at this year’s BAFTA TV Awards After Party.

Now I know what you’re thinking: What the hell was a pair of chancers like you doing at the BAFTAs?

What, apart from running end to end snapping as many celebrity selfies as we could, before getting turfed out by a hirsute Graham Norton?

Believe us, we’re as clueless as you.

But the real reason we found ourselves rubbing shoulders with ‘that one out of Eastenders’ at 2am on a Sunday night, was all thanks to the work of one toy inventor – and her tireless PR.

It’s unlikely that when Rena Nathanson first cooked up the idea for Bananagrams, she ever imagined the scenario in which it lead her to sharing a table with James Nesbitt and tucking into a cordon bleu with James Corden, while watching television royalty collect their accolades.

Not only that, but I doubt she ever imagined those very same celebrities would spend their evening piecing together phrases (however unprintable some of them may have been) out of her very own word-game creation?

To paraphrase something comedian Lee Mack told me when asked if he won any awards at Sunday night’s proceedings (see above photo): "Did she b****cks".

So, how did it all happen, then? How did a toy inventor manage to get her game in front of a room swarming with slightly inebriated celebrities, as well as included in the awards ceremony’s official gift bag selection?

The answer is quite simply PR. It’s the same reason Nathanson managed to secure a foreword penned by Dame Judi Dench in her Little Book of Bananagrams game companion book and a string of successful Bananagrams tournaments across the UK.

The power of PR can never be underestimated.

OK, so not every inventor’s game is guaranteed such a prime slot as Nathanson’s, but on a smaller scale PR could help work wonders in other ways, not least freeing you up from pedaling your inventions across the country, to spend time doing what you do best: creating.

Well, we’ll await the real repercussions of last night to appear in this week’s tabloids where we can only pray certain members of the team weren’t caught shamelessly ‘doing the robot’ in front of the disapproving cast of TOWIE.

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